Rafael Nadal advanced to the round of 16 of the Indian Wells Masters 1000 with his victory against Daniel Evans, ATP number 29in two sets with a result of 7-5 and 6-3 in an hour and 43 minutes of meeting. The Spaniard recovered from a difficult start against a demanding rival who showed a high level in central defender. With the elimination of Daniil Medvedev and Alexander Zverev, the man from Manacor remains the main favorite of the tournament. His next opponent will be the winner of the duel between Denis Shapovalov and Reilly Opelka.
Rafael Nadal and Daniel Evans They jumped onto the center court of the Indian Wells Masters 1000 in the second turn of the day, they did so after the surprise of the elimination of Daniel Medvedevtop seed, at the hands of a Gael Monfils who will now challenge Carlos Alcaraz in the round of 16. After the scare experienced against Sebastian Korda, who flirted with throwing him out of California, Nadal faced the duel against the British, number 29 of the ATP, as a new opportunity to extend his impeccable path against a player he had already beaten in the previous two.
The Spaniard comfortably took the first game on serve to start off with the initiative in the match. Nadal soon found that his rival offered him more pace than Korda, but also a demanding level that made him face two balls of break. The Balearic saved the first with a direct serve with the second service, but in the second he crashed his right into the net and Evans went to the first break of the match with a favorable 1-2.
The good news was that there was time to get serve back, but Evans was unwilling to concede any respite and continued with his volleying display. With 2-3 and 40-30 on the scoreboard, Nadal looked for the deuce to the rest, but his attack with the right went to the corridor. Evans agreed, who saw how the 2-4 went up on the scoreboard and came out unscathed in another game.
in search of rhythm
Nadal continued with his script, added his third game with a love serve and waited for his moment: a winning return to the corner made him have his first ball of break. Evans tried to save it, but the ball crashed into the tape and after a slight suspense about where it would bounce, the ball stayed in his field, leading the score to 4-4.
What a point ?
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With his service, Nadal was ahead on the scoreboard, a moment he celebrated as a small victory. And it is that Evans was offering a great level, ready to collect the second victim of the day on center court. The Balearic raised a new breaking ball before securing the tie-breaker, which he did not need to get to because he broke at the right time to close the first set (7-5) in almost an hour of play.
The improvement in Nadal’s sensations was also visible at the start of the second set, which he premiered with his service with a blank game. In addition, an Evans rod meant a break from the beginning for the Balearic, a generous income but that did not invite relaxation. The Briton warned the Spaniard in the fifth game, attacking from the right and forcing Nadal to lift a break ball to make it 4-1 in a game that lasted eight minutes.
Nadal took his next turn of serve with a blank game, to remove all the tension and face the rest with the first opportunity to close the match. Evans held on to the court without giving up any points, but the Balearic resorted to his service to sentence the match (7-5 and 6-3). With certain difficulties, but overcoming two important obstacles, Nadal is already in the round of 16 at Indian Wells, where Shapovalov or Opelka await him.